Vasco fisherfolk on Saturday demanded strict action against illegal fishmongers in the city.
President of the Vasco Fish Market Association, Carridade, said that five months ago, Vasco MLA Carlos Almeida, the chief executive, deputy collector and Vasco police inspector had a joint meeting with the fisherfolk.
“In the meeting, we raised questions about wholesale fish sellers as well as those who sell fish sitting in strategic places. But the Murmugao Municipal Council has failed to keep an eye on the illegal vendors,” he said.
"We were assured by the concerned officials and MLA Almeida that the vendors would be shifted from here. But till date, MLAs and concerned officials have failed to take action against them. Ban those vendors first and then take the initiative to build a new fish market. Until then, we will not move from this place," he added.
Although the construction of a new market complex is still taking place, Mormugao Municipal Council officials had surveyed the fisherfolk in the area last week. However, due to a lack of proper cooperation from many fishmongers, the official could not complete the survey.
"Ban wholesale fishermen from the Vasco Khariwada area as well as women fishmongers from various locations in the city. Only then do you start building a new fish market. Otherwise, we will oppose the construction of this fish market", said the women fishmongers in the Vasco fish market.
When asked about this, MLA Almeida said, “People get fish at cheaper rates from wholesale fishmongers by weighing them at a lower price. People will go to them accordingly. We have taken action against them and is still being taken by the police. But how can we an eye on them for 24 hours. The wholesale fishmongers will soon be shifted to the old fish market of the municipality.”
Meanwhile, MMC had claimed that the new fish market will benefit the fisherfolk of Vasco. "The new fish market is for the benefit of the fish sellers in the fish market and it is not right for them to obstruct it. Every fish eater who wants bigger fish and more fish will buy fish at wholesale prices. Also, the man who comes to the fish market every day will come to the fish market, so the women fishmongers should not be helpless. He said that the newly equipped fish market will be constructed in the next one and a half years," said Damodar Kaskar, Chairperson, MMC.